No new Birmingham pub bombings probe

Published Monday, 07 April 2014
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Families of the victims of the Birmingham pub bombings have been told that the case will not be reinvestigated.

No new Birmingham pub bombings probe
The IRA was blamed for the bombing. (© Getty)

Two bombs exploded at the Mulberry Bush and the Tavern in the Town pubs in 1974, killing 21 people and injuring 182.

The IRA was immediately blamed, but denied any involvement - a denial which was always treated with scepticism by the police.

Six men - known as the Birmingham six - were jailed for the murders but had their convictions overturned in 1991, after 16 years in prison.

On Monday relatives of those who died met with the Chief Constable of West Midlands Police.

They were told a fresh inquiry will not be set up, following a review of evidence in the case.

There were angry scenes outside the meeting as the families expressed their disappointment over the decision.

Julie Hambleton, who lost her sister Maxine, said: "We knew that they were not going to reinvestigate it.

"What is extremely insulting and disappointing for us as a family is the fact that our own police force has no interest in going looking for the perpetrators of the biggest unsolved mass murder in England of the 20th Century.

"We have been treated with such contempt for so many years. We have come to the conclusion that this is the nadir of our justice system. How much lower can you go?"

Chief Constable of West Midlands Police Chris Sims explained the decision by saying there had been "insufficient evidence" for proceedings.

"There have been questions over the years why certain individuals such as the people named by the media apparently never formed part of any investigation," he said.

"I want to be open and transparent today and tell you that these men had been subject to investigation in the 1970s and the 1991-94 investigation.

"There was insufficient evidence for proceedings against any person. My professional judgement is that the 1991 to 94 investigation was carried out to a good standard."

The relatives of those killed say West Midlands Police refused to comment on whether anyone had received a so-called "on-the-run" letter in relation to the bombings because of the ongoing judicial investigation into the letters.

They say they are determined to fight on to bring those responsible to justice.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
6 Comments
realistic in planet earth wrote (200 days ago):
these people, as with all innocent victims, deserve justice. end of.
Neil in Lisburn wrote (200 days ago):
And yet the people with the answers sit in power in Stormont. Disgraceful. No multi million pound enquiries into countless IRA "war" crimes.
Jos in Belfast wrote (200 days ago):
Justice for the victims of the Birmingham and Dublin bombings is only right.
Ex police in Belfast wrote (200 days ago):
Yet the British government pander to Terrorists and hold how many Bloody Sunday enquiries ,send out letters of get out of jail free letters ...and so on yet INNOCENT families are told no more .Someone somewhere is guilty of this .....so why are the police not continuing investigations .... A case is not over until a person is held accountable in court . Someone planted that device. Shame on the British government for the way they treat innocent victims.yet allow Terrorists in government . Copy to RTE Al Jezzera BBC NI CNN Fox News Nolan show. Other news media
disgusting in belfast wrote (200 days ago):
these people deserve to know what happened to their loved ones.
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